So many of our communications these days take place in writing, with companies relying heavily on email systems for contact with employees, customers, and suppliers. While it is by far easier than playing phone tag with someone as you try and reach them, it can lack a personal touch.
While emails are the ideal way to keep a record of valuable information, there are times that they cannot replace the value of a telephone conversation. In these cases, it is common to follow the call up with a confirmatory email to ensure that both parties have the same understanding of the outcome of the telephonic discussion.
Under what circumstances is it best to get in touch by phone?
When you need to say sorry
Apologizing is not easy for everyone. It is hard to admit when you are wrong, but it is necessary, especially to maintain healthy relationships with co-workers, subordinates, clients, and suppliers. An email apology tends to ring hollow to the recipient and, while saying sorry in person is ideal, it is not always possible. A telephone call is the next best thing. Only through your voice can the person hear the sincerity of your apology.
Many people become tongue-tied when they apologize, and it might be an excellent idea to write your apology out beforehand or make a list of points to include while you are speaking.
But do not make it sound overly scripted if you want your apology to come across as authentic. You will not need to worry about how long your apology call takes if you have a Virtual Phone System that offers the user business calling from a desktop or smartphone from Talkroute.
When you need to explain something complex
Sometimes, you need to convey a lot of technical information and take someone through a process step-by-step. Think about a situation when a customer needs to follow several procedures to install a computer program.
An email with these directions may be overwhelming. The customer might not understand what the instructions convey. A telephone call makes it easier for them to do what is necessary.
A voice on the other end of the line is reassuring when tackling a complicated process that you are not familiar with. That is what makes a phone call the perfect way to help in this case.
When you failed to respond timeously
It can happen to anyone. Failing to reply to an email might escape your memory, or you might not see that email at all. Before you know it, too much time has passed. Responding now by email may make you seem arrogant and uncaring of any inconvenience you may have caused.
A personal phone call to explain what happened and make amends is the best approach in situations like these. The other party is far more likely to be receptive to your call than they would be to an email.
When it is personal
Increased use of email and texting as forms of communication means that people have begun to forget the value of a personal phone call. It does not take that much time out of your day. That phone call might take less time than typing an email would.
Personal matters are best addressed in person, as their name suggests. The second-best alternative is a phone call. Personal issues crop up in your professional and personal life. Do not hide behind a screen when this happens. Instead, emerge from behind it and make the phone call to connect with the person on the other end of the line.